Mind in action is thought, and thought is creative. Men are thinking now as they never thought before. ~ Master Key Part 5 – Charles F. Haanel
“History must live by that principle of life which is proper to it,—and that life is God…. God looks upon that wide stage on which the generations of men successively meet and strive. He is there, it is true, an invisible God; but if the profane multitude pass without noticing Him, because “He is a God that hides himself,” thoughtful men, and such as feel their need of the Principle of their life, seek Him with the more earnestness, and are not satisfied until they find Him and throw themselves prostrate at His feet. And their search is richly rewarded; for from the heights to which they are obliged to meet their God—the world’s history, instead of offering, as to the ignorant crowd, a confused chaos, appears a majestic temple, which the invisible hand of God erects, and which rises to His glory above the rock of humanity. ~ Preface of History of the Reformation – JH Merle D’Aubigene
As I thought this week upon the readings and my faith I was struck with how remarkably the truths that Haanel wrote or spoke (if you are taking advantage of Davenes recordings…a pure delight) compared with the History of the Reformation. And since the day of this post coincides with the date upon which we remember this time in History let us take a look briefly at the events and thoughts that encompassed the Reformation period. A time which demonstrated how the Spirit of God went about as if melting the ices of a long winter upon Christendom. Whom by their traditions, fables, superstitions and moral corruption had frozen the hearts of people and turned the Faith of the apostles to the very thing that Christ had freed them from: the tyrannical rule of Man.
“Even though the banner was raised in Germany it did not mean that the truth was then communicated to Switzerland, then Switzerland to France and France to England. All these countries received it from God, just as one part of the world does not transmit the light to another part; but the same shining sun communicates directly to all the earth. Christ the day spring from on high, infinitely exalted above mankind, was at the period of the reformation, as at that of the establishment of Christianity—the Divine fire which gave life to the World” The History of the Reformation – JH Merle D’Aubigene
On October 31, 1517, an Augustinian monk named Martin Luther posted 95 debate questions on the door of Wittenberg Church, which began the movement known as ‘the Reformation. That which constituted the great wonder of the Reformation, was the setting forth of God’s truth in the midst of human error. The gift of Divine grace gratuitously made, received by faith without any merit on our part, is the beginning of the new creation and of the new creature. This brought about a new era; one of light, of liberty, and of faith, which contrasted forcibly with the darkness of the Middle Ages.
“… Luther was the first who publicly, and with indomitable courage, raised the standard of truth against the empire of error; called general attention to the fundamental doctrine of the Gospel—salvation by grace; introduced his age to that new career of knowledge, faith, and life, out of which a new world has arisen; in a word, began a true and salutary revolution. The great struggle, of which the theses of 1517 were the signal, was truly the birth-throe of the Reformation, giving it at once both a body and a soul. Luther was the first reformer.” The History of the Reformation – JH Merle D’Aubigene
I could keep writing about the Reformation and it would thrill my soul to do so, Nevertheless perhaps at another time if comments find it appropriate (hint, hint).
Let me return to our study and exercises for this week as I found them to be both exhilarating and stressful. As the contrast lends itself to ” the concept of good news and bad news” let me start with the ‘bad news”
One of our exercises for the week is: Unless directly asked, give NO OPINIONS. Period. Be the non-judgmental OBSERVER. As the week progressed I found myself a rather opinionated fellow. During the week my wife questioned if I was sharing my opinion to which I spouted off “that I was not giving my opinion just the facts” Well we chuckled and I have since been guarding my tongue or it is best to say engaging my mind before the motor of the mouth speaks. This exercise coupled with the extremely full work week and all of the extraordinary events led me to the exhilarating part of our exercises.
Everyday we are required to sit and think. Except actually we are to think about nothing except what has been instructed. I have found myself enjoying this exercise as I allow the body to relax and feel the energy radiate from my solar plexis; a calmness sets in as it flows through me. I consciously allow all of the negative feelings and emotions of the days gone by, those contrived to be ahead, and those currently present to move away through forgiveness acceptance and choice. what I relish about the exercise is that I am training myself to keep a short inventory on those items that are contrary to being courageous,noble and consistent to who I am. And lastly allowing the thoughts from my mind to flow through me like the water in a river continues; not focusing on any thought but that which I choose to.
13. When this mental house-cleaning process has been completed, the material which is left will be suitable for the making of the kind of ideals or mental images which we desire to realize ~ Master Key Part 5 – Charles F. Haanel
I have found myself looking forward to this time of “sitting still and thinking”
Let me close with this quote from a remarkable character from history whom we will become acquainted with next week
“It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows.” ~ Epictetus